Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Streetcar Pyramid

"I was an overachiever. I'm settling into my natural groove now."
--Natalie Scheffer (Joe Somebody)

In his masterful 1932 work The Bubble That Broke the World, Garet Garrett draws analogy between the great pyramids of Egypt, often regarded as world 'wonders,' and wasteful public spending projects. The real wonder of the pyramids is how massive amounts of economic resources that could have been put to productive use were diverted for years to build an expensive ornament.

The city of Cincinnati's latest pyramid is the downtown streetcar. After progressives jumped on board the first few weeks to celebrate another completed public works project, ridership has been dwindling. Usage currently rests at about half the projected rate. Moreover, riders report long waits at stops.

Predictably, the city council has commissioned a downtown traffic study on the matter.

There is no rest for pyramid builders.

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